Credit: Laura Hayes

We know D.C. Get our free newsletter to stay in the know.

Virginia Senator Mark Warner has no clue how to make a tuna melt and yet he took to social media this week to share his incredibly whack recipe anyway.

“My daughters won’t eat them anymore, and my staff tried to stop me from sharing this quarantine delicacy with the world,” the senator wrote on Instagram. “Fortunately for you, they were OVERULED.” 

If nothing else, this abomination proves politicians should always listen to their team.

For those of you who can’t watch the horror unfold on Instagram, know that Warner’s first error is not mixing the tuna and mayonnaise in a bowl before loading it onto bread. Instead, he slathers both slices with globs of mayonnaise before dumping undrained flakes of Chicken of the Sea on top.

What follows is worse. He then drops two slices of cheddar cheese—proclaiming he’s a “two-slice man”—before putting the entire sandwich in the microwave for 30 seconds. That’s his only cooking mechanism. The so-called sandwich never sees a pan or a toaster oven.

While he waits for his melt to turn to microwaved mush, he goes to wash his hands. He tells viewers he’s scrubbing for a full 30 seconds to kill the coronavirus, forgetting that he already touched his food. 

Warner is so confident about his “tuna melt extraordinaire” that he starts the video with a warning: “Unless you’re a professional chef, you’re going to want to occasionally pause the video to keep up.” 

I’m no professional chef, but I certainly asked one particularly well versed in sandwiches for his opinion on Warner’s weak-sauce rendition of one of America’s favorite lunches.

“You’ve got to drain the tuna,” says Bub & Pop’s chef and co-owner Jon Taub. “Flake out the chunks, then mix in the mayo. The way he did it was super lazy.”

Taub, who lives in Virginia, reminds Warner that the tuna, at one point, was a living being. “The least he could do is butter the bread and either toast it in the oven or finish it in a pan like a grilled cheese,” he says. “The microwave is a no-no.” 

Taub also advises Warner to improve his hand-washing technique: “I’d like to see a more effective washing of the hands … He focused primarily on the palms and outside of his hands. I’d like to see him focus in between his fingers and nails.”

The sad sandwich doesn’t even have any crunch. Taub recommends adding cherry peppers and celery. 

Stay up to date on coronavirus and local news

We’re providing daily updates on COVID-19’s impact in D.C., and subscribing to District Line Daily is a great way to support us